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Essex is tucked into the west bank of the Connecticut River five miles from Long Island Sound. A number of nearby coves and inlets, such as Hamburg Cove and Selden's Creek, are ideal inlets to explore by boat.
The Shipyard is located in protected North Cove, just off the CT River. 100 floating docks accommodate boats from 20’ to 100’, and are outfitted with 30 and 50 amp power, water, cable and free WIFI. Brewer Dauntless Shipyard, c.1917, was named for the schooner Dauntless, one of the late-1800s America's Cup yachts. The yard developed a strong reputation building many wooden vessels until the late 1930s. The yard's focus turned to yacht maintenance, which it continues to do today.
The Marina is located on the west bank of the CT River just north of marker R-26 in the middle of the Essex mooring field. 35 floating docks, and a 150’ fixed dock (which also serves as the Valvtect fuel dock) can accommodate any boat. Ample electric is available from 30, 50 to 100 amp service, as well as water and WIFI at each slip. Additionally, the marina has 55 moorings, which are serviced by the marina’s launch.
Brewer Dauntless Marina was originally known as the Essex Paint and Chemical Company in the 1920s — until fire destroyed the building in 1924. It was rebuilt and continued operation until 1986. The original Chandlery of Essex was constructed in 1924, and operated successfully for decades. It was eventually acquired by the Brewer Yacht Yard group in 2008.
Full Service, Year Round. Our experienced marine technicians are available to take care of your (and your boat’s) needs, year round. Offering a wide range of manufacturer-certified services, our skilled staff have an excellent reputation in the industry.
CT Certified Clean Marina. Brewer Dauntless Shipyard & Marina is proud to be recognized as a CT Certified Clean Marina.
- Abby's Place
Casual waterfront dining overlooking the marina and the Connecticut River. Sit on the deck, or dine inside, for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Open year round. (located at the Shipyard)
- Essex Marine Group
Brokerage specializing in motoryacht and sportfish. (at the Shipyard)
- Boatworks Yacht Sales
Dealers for Grand Banks, East Bay, Hatteras, Cabo, Blue Star and more. (at the Shipyard)
- Eastland Yachts
Dealers for Nonsuch, Hallberg-Rassy; Alerion Express, Sabre, Bruckmann, Beneteau Powerboats, Limestone and quality pre-owned boats. (at the Shipyard)
- Prestige Yacht Sales
Dealers for Hunt Yachts and Beneteau sailboats; brokerage for a mix of fine vessels. (at the Marina)
- The Essex Corinthian Yacht Club
Is a member-owned yacht club offering reciprocity to other yacht club members. Full catering is available by the club's in-house galley. The club overlooks the Connecticut River and is available for rent for your private party or function. (at the Marina)
- Boatique USA of Essex
New England's premier shop for all things nautical. A full line of gifts, collectibles, furnishings and more! (at the Marina)
- Griswold Inn
Fine old fare dining, in walking distance.
- The Black Seal Tavern
New England Pub in the village of Essex.
- Olive Oyl's Carry-Out Cuisine
Creative carry out cuisine.
- Sweet P's Ice Cream
Charming ice cream shop on Main Street.
- Village Provisions Company
A complete convenience market, with deli meats, groceries, beverages, bicycle rentals and laundry service.
- Copper Beech Inn
The Inn provides elegant, high-quality dining.
- Essex is a wonderful historic village that is fun to explore with shops like Toys Ahoy, Hattitudes, Rubber Stamp Mania, Country Pleasures, The Glass Basket and The Peddler Village Gift Shop.
- Essex Steam Train
- Tennis Courts
- Golf Courses
- Enterprise Rent-a-Car
Old Saybrook, CT
Will deliver and pick up the car at the marina free of charge.
- 9 Town Transit
Bus service from Old Saybrook to Chester Runs along the Connecticut River Will pick up and drop off at the marina with a reservation
- Chester Airport
Chester, CT (10 minutes) Charter and small craft available
- Bradley Airport
Hartford, CT (50 minutes) Commercial aviation
- Amtrak Northeast Rail Services
Old Saybrook, CT (10 minutes) Washington – Boston line
About the Area
One of the oldest settlements in Connecticut, ‘Pettipague’ was established in 1648. The village’s primary business was the marine trades. Shipbuilding started in 1720, producing schooners for the West Indies trade. The first warship owned by the United States - the 24-gun Oliver Cromwell - was built here. By the early 1800s, its reputation as a major shipbuilding center attracted the attention of the British, who chose to raid the town during the war of 1812. The village sustained large economic losses, but, by promising not to resist the British militia, were able to save their homes and cause no harm to the townspeople. Shortly afterward, the name of the town was changed to Essex.
Today, Essex’s Main Street maintains much of the same configuration as it did 300 years ago. Some lovely historic homes, with different architectural features, are tucked amongst the village’s collection of boutiques, specialty shops, taverns, and historic restaurants.
It's historic Steamboat Dock, now the Connecticut River Museum, a National Register site, provides exhibits about the maritime heritage of the Connecticut River and the lower river valley.
History abounds in Essex, which is one reason why it's such an ideal cruising destination or home port for your boat. In Essex, the past and the present merge.
Brewer Dauntless Shipyard was named after the schooner Dauntless, one of the late-1800s America's Cup yachts. The yard was formed in 1917 and maintained a strong reputation building many wooden vessels until the late 1930s. Although some boat building continued, the yard's focus turned to yacht maintenance, which it continues to do today.
For more information on Essex and its surrounding attractions, please visit the following websites:
Brewer Dauntless Shipyard & Marina’s two locations offer a total of 140 seasonal slips, as well as transient slips for visiting yachts. Our floating docks are well maintained, and all slips are equipped with ample power, water, cable and WiFi internet. There are also 60 seasonal moorings, with launch service.
Our attentive dock staff are always available by VHF radio, and will assist you with docking and maneuvering, regardless of whether you are an experienced boat owner, or a novice.
- 140 seasonal slips
- 60 moorings
- Transient slips & moorings available
- Launch Service available May 1 through October 31
- Sparkling swimming pool (at the Shipyard, but available to both locations)
- 8 – 13′ dockside depth at MLW
- Well-marked approach channel
- Floating docks
- T-dock can accommodate vessels to 125′
- Water at every slip
- 110v /125v / 30A power outlets
- 220v / 250v / 50A power outlets
- 220v / 100A power outlet on T-dock
- Free WiFi
- Cable TV
- Picnic area with BBQ grills
- Ice & marine supplies available on site
- Groceries nearby
- Pump out facilities
- Clean heads with showers
- Washers & Dryers on site, laundry service available nearby
- VHF Info: 9 (at Shipyard)
- VHF Info: 68 (at Marina)
When boating season comes to an end, Brewer Dauntless Shipyard & Marina offers winter storage for vessels either: in the water, outside on land, or inside our secure, clean, heated, and fire-protected storage buildings. Our 35-ton Travelift, working in conjunction with our 25-ton hydraulic trailer, can handle your boat with the utmost of care. The staff maintains a regular schedule of checking and inspecting boats throughout the winter, making sure that your boat is properly supported and cradled.
Take advantage of your boat’s ‘down time’ to tune up and upgrade for the summer sailing season. Our service team is available to take care of almost every maintenance, repair or improvement – whether mechanical, electrical, finish work, carpentry or rigging.
Brewer Dauntless Shipyard & Marina, though among the smaller of the Brewer Yacht Yards, rivals even the largest of the yards for its productivity, relative to its size. Recognized for truly personal and professional service, the Dauntless crew is skilled in the maintenance, service, and restoration of both recreational and competitive yachts. Uniquely, this yard provides clients with customized plans designed to help each yacht owner develop a long term maintenance vision. By identifying and listing “deficiencies” for each vessel, the Dauntless crew helps each client layout a program that will result in the most trouble-free boating experience possible. By placing emphasis on “preventative maintenance”, lay-up time is minimized and underway time is maximized. The Dauntless mechanics, painters, fiberglass specialists, woodworkers, and riggers have years of experience and are ready and able to tackle any project. No matter what the job, the Dauntless team takes pride in top-quality results.
In climate-controlled, well-lit, fire-protected, state-of-the-art buildings we provide complete boat yard services year-round. With our 35-ton open-end travel lift, our 20-ton hydraulic trailer, our 15-ton crane, and our man-lift we have the ability to handle and care for well over 200 yachts.
The longevity and dedication of our mechanical crew has resulted in a well established department that is widely known for its vast experience. This four man team is known for its strict preventative maintenance policies, but is also capable of repairing and installing everything from engines, to generators, to refrigeration, heat and waste systems. By regularly attending service schools and in-house seminars, our technicians are up-to-date on the latest and greatest available to the industry.
Consistent, yacht-quality results have earned our paint department an excellent reputation. With one of the most advanced spray booths in the region, our crew turns out as many as 12 major projects per year. Our four man crew is skilled in the application of Awlgrip and urethane products made by U.S. Paint. We also maintain brightwork, restore damaged fiberglass, color-match gelcoat, and make major fiberglass modifications using various laminating resins. For photographs of some of Brewer Dauntless Shipyard & Marina’s paint and refinishing jobs, please click here.
We service and install complete electronics packages following ABYC standards. Whether rewiring your boat, or installing new communications and navigation, we’re able to get the job done.
Our carpenters are accomplished craftsmen and skilled joiners. This talented crew is capable of everything from simple trim work, to intricate cabinetry design and installation, to custom fabrication of enclosures and teak decks.
Our riggers service everything from standing and running rigging, to winches, lifelines, and furlers. For a service quote or to learn more about our service capabilities, call us at (860) 767-0001 or stop by for a visit.
Douglas Domenie, General Manager
Sydney Kingsbury, Office Manager
Ernest “Cy” Libby, Marina Manager
ShipyardBrewer Dauntless Marina 37 Pratt Street, Essex, CT 06426
- General Manager:
- Doug Domenie
- (860) 767-0001
- (860) 767-3074
- Buoy Ref:
- 'R 26'
- 41° 21' 15" N / 72° 23' 15"W
MarinaBrewer Dauntless Marina 9 Novelty Lane, Essex, CT 06426
- General Manager:
- Cy Libby
- (860) 767-8267
- (860) 767-3074
- Buoy Ref:
- The marina's well-marked entrance channel is between day markers 25 and 26
- 41° 20' 58" N / 72° 23' 03"W
Directions by Sea
Proceed up the Connecticut River past marker "R26" located in the vicinity of the Essex mooring field. On your port side, you will note two sets of yellow channel (local) markers, the northern pair marking the channel into Brewer Dauntless Shipyard. Proceed westward in the northern channel, past the two other marinas, and you will see Brewer Dauntless Shipyard directly ahead of you. Hail us on VHF channel 9, prior to entering the inner channel.
The Marina can be reached by turning west at Red #26 and proceeding through the southern fairway marked by yellow cans. The Marina is just north of the channel. You will notice the fuel dock, which is marked by orange fender balls and the very noticeable Brewer oval. Call on VHF channel 68 for assistance.
Information about the Connecticut River Amtrak Bridge: From May 15th through October 15th -- all bridges re-open immediately after trains pass and will close in sufficient time for approaching trains. (During the Off Season, bridges will be opened as soon as practicable; in no case more than 20 minutes from time of request).
Radio Name: 'Old Lyme Draw" | Type: Bascule Bridge
Vertical Clearance: 19' max (closed) | Horizontal Clearance: 139' max
For more information, please reference the Amtrak 'Smart Card'